Wednesday, April 29, 2009

You can't always get what you want...

Is this debate about Joba Chamberlain ever going to end? I have a feeling that for the entire season we are going to be hearing fans and the media going back and forth about whether or not Joba should be a starter or if he should be in the bullpen.

I will admit, I was one of those fans who thought Joba should be in the pen. I have to also admit though that I listen to Mike Francesa quite often, and was suckered into the mindset that he had about how Joba is better as the guy who will eventually take over as the closer of the team once Mariano retires.

I have since then developed my own opinion and contemplated the pros and cons that erupt from both sides of the spectrum. On one hand, Joba had great success as the 8th inning man and it proved to be a great combination of having Joba being the bridge to Mo.

But you have to look beyond that. Joba was brought up as a starter through college and in the minor leagues. The reason the Yankees placed him in the pen was due to the fact they needed a boost to their bullpen and knew they needed to restrict the number of innings that he could pitch. It was designed as a temporary solution, not one that was going to continue long-term.

It's as easy as this: The man has 4 developed pitches. It would be hard to, if not impossible, to find a guy in the Major Leagues that has so many strong pitches and is being designated as a 8th inning man. Rivera, like Joba, was brought up in the minor leagues as a starter. But unlike Joba, Rivera has only 2 successful pitches that are part of his repertoire. Plus, with Rivera still the closer, you are wasting the talent that Joba has so that can he pitch the 8th inning of a game that could be a meaningless blowout.

Simple stated, you get more out of Joba as a starter. Perhaps a situation will arise where the Yankees are desperate for a closer and the switch to a starting role in the Major Leagues hasn't worked out well for him down the road. You never really know what can happen, but for now, you need to keep him where he is at. Where he has been at since a player in college. I am sure the is just the beginning of the debate of where Joba should be pitching, especially once Wang comes back and if Hughes is showing success in the major leagues. I guess time will tell, but regardless there will always be a group of people on either side of the argument that will be complaining.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Random Baseball Stuff

Since I had night class, I wasn't able to catch the whole game, so all I can really gather is that the Yankees had a very exciting inning during the 7th and that the rest of the game appeared to be very quiet on both sides.

Some other things to add:
  • Posada has a pulled hamstring. While I hope it is nothing serious, I am glad to see that was the reason for running ridiculously slow to first Monday night. I was not thrilled to see Posada's lackadaisical playing, especially when the Yankees had already been looking like they were asleep for the entire game.
  • Looks like Phil had a great game. I am looking forward to watching the encore to see how him and Melancon pitched. From the score, I take it I will be pleased with the results.
  • The Joba in the bullpen debate has erupted again. Ay yi yi....
  • Gary Sheffield had a triple. What?? I can't wait to see that replay. Mets still lost. They look terrible and their starting rotation is brutal (with the exception of Santana).
  • King Felix pitched another stellar game, improving his record to 4-0.
  • Blue Jays win again! Yay! Richmond looked good yet again and is now 3-0 on the season. Its insane how well some of their offensive players are doing. Hill is hitting .371 (5HR and 20 RBI) and Lind is at .314. I hope Alex Rios starts to heat up soon. He is hitting a mere .237 but will heat up soon as the weather starts to improve.
  • Tomorrow should be a good game as Greinke goes for his 5th win of the season.
  • Boston lost in the 9th inning against Cleveland. It is about time they lose.
  • The Nationals are terrible. No need to really say much more. They need to start putting money towards that team before they hit the garbage.
  • The Phillies are hot and have won 5 straight. I really like the crafty lefty Jamie Moyer, who is like 50 years old and still pitching strong, despite the fact his fastball is probably like 85mph. However, while his record is 3-1, his ERA is at a hefty 5.09. Ouch. It looks like hes been blessed by a strong Phillies offense for the games he has started.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Sunday Baseball.

Roy Halladay is 4-1! The man is on fire!!!

Hopefully a win for the Yanks tonight. Will be interesting to see if Melancon is put into the game tonight. I would think so since the pen is drained. But perhaps Pettitte will give us 9 innings. Okay small chance of that happening which means we will probably see Mark in the game..

I wish I could watch the game but instead I'll be at work. Gotta love having 12 jobs!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Thursday Night Baseball

  • BJ Ryan is back on the DL again, along with JC Romero. I am shocked that Toronto is 12-5. Their starting pitching is so injured along with their bullpen now. Even though the season is young, it really does amaze me how well they are doing.
  • Scott Richmond, the starter for Toronto today, had a freaking sick curveball. I love watching a guy when his stuff is really working and he gets people swinging at balls in the dirt.
  • Wang did decent today but it appears as if he is going to try to figure his stuff out in AAA. Hopefully he can work on whatever he needs to work on
  • The Mets are terrible and have lost 4 straight. I was watching the game today and they look horrendous. It's like Johan Santana is the only guy awake on the team. The Cards made some great defensive plays today too which were pretty sweet.
  • It's interesting to also note that on a Thursday day game, the Cards were able to sell out a majority of their luxury box seats behind home plate. Hmmm Yankees?
  • Pujols is on fire. He has 6 hrs and 21 rbis so far in this young season.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

The ties that Albany has within Major League Baseball

After hearing Al Leiter briefly discussing his time with the Albany- Colonie Yankees, I thought it would be interesting to see what other notable alumni have developed out of the once popular Double-A Yankees that called Albany their home from from the years 1985-1994. The names I was able to find were alarming and it is pretty awesome to see the amount of talent that came up right in front of my eyes when I was a child.

Managers of the A/C Yankees:
  • 1988: Stump Merrill- Yankees Manager from 1990-1991
  • 1989: Buck Showalter- Manager of the Yankees, Diamondbacks, and Rangers
  • 1990 Rick Down, who later spent time as the hitting coach for both the Yankees and Mets
Alumni (Currently on the Yankees):
  • Derek Jeter (1994)
  • Mariano Rivera (1994)
  • Andy Pettitte (1993-1994)
  • Jorge Posada (1993)
Additional Alumni
  • Bernie Williams (1989-1990)
  • Al Leiter (1987)
  • Bob Geren (1987)- Current manager of the Oakland A's
  • Fredi Gonzalez (1987)- Current manger of the Florida Marlins
  • Casey Close (1987) Derek Jeter's agent
Other former greats: Gerald Williams, J.T. Snow, Roberto Kelly, Hal Morris, Doug Drabek, Pat Kelly, Randy Velarde, Andy Stankiewicz, Russ Davis, Sterling Hitchcock, Deion Sanders, Brad Ausmus, Russ Springer, and Mike DeJean.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Interesting baseball notes....

  • We see everyone complaining about the lack of attendance at Yankee Stadium, but can you imagine the sight of under 7,000 at the Marlins/Pirates game on Monday night. The game was delayed due to rain and by the time play resumed, only a few thousand people were left in the stadium. During the final few innings, only a couple dozen fans could be seen in the stands... I cant even imagine that.
  • My boy Roy Halladay finally received his first loss of the season. It had to happen one of these days
  • Cliff Lee is off to a terrible start. Was last year a fluke?
  • I think Matt Holliday would look amazing in pinstripes.
  • Leiter mentioned his brief stint at Double-A Albany during the telecast on YES. I know myself and my friend were glowing when hearing this. Him and Bob Geren were on the team in 1987.
  • Nice walk-off by the Melkman tonight. While I say that, and congratulate him I am by no means hopping on the Melky bandwagon. I still think hes terrible and I don't want him our starting CF. I'd rather stick with Brett Gardner.
  • Toronto is off to a hot start. While I am shocked by this, I do not think they will be able to keep it up. Their starting pitching is too young and the back of their pen scares me. Hopefully BJ Ryan can figure his stuff out.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Looking foward to tomorrow

The A's come into town tomorrow and will be invading the Bronx. Not only am I excited to see the return of the Giambino, but my main man Matt Holliday is finally in the American League and I will finally be able to see him in action. Hopefully he can prove me right and continue to put up the same numbers he was able to put up while in the higher altitude of Colorado at Coors Field.

In addition, the Loquacious Lefty himself will be making his debut on the YES Network tomorrow which is very exciting. A lot of people seemed to think Leiter left YES, but it appears they have just lessened the number of games he will be calling this year. I know that leaves many Yankee fans and members of the media very upset.

Lets hope for a good game tomorrow. I guess the weather doesn't look so promising but lets cross our fingers they can get a game in as it is the only night I have this week that isn't being occupied by teaching the darling children and going to grad school.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

What a great game

Well, this sure has been a great game, currently it is 22-4 Cleveland, but at this rate with the bases loaded and the way the ball has been flying out of the park, it could easily be 26-4. It is insane how balls that appear to be easy outs are flying out of the park. The person who built this park turned out to be a real genius.... (as we speak, the ball just fell short of being a grand slam, they were lucky someone hadn't let one loose to assist the ball in departing).

Anyhow, I'm not quite sure why i am still watching this sad of a game. At least I can say I am not one of those poor fools that spent 2,625 dollars to sit in the prime real estate. However, the 4 hours of game time would have at least made me feel like I got a little bit of time to make up for all the money I spent... 4 hours of food could go far.

In sum, I feel for the Wanger. He looks so lost out there. Swisher has so much energy out there and I am loving it. Lastly, the seats in the lower levels were dreadfully empty. Its quite sad. I know my booty would love to be in those seats. And I would have stayed for this entire dreadful game too.

Friday, April 17, 2009

I think i have some issues...

So to honor the first place Blue Jays (for the short time being anyway), and because I am a loser and for some reason love this song.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Swisher is great

I am starting to really like Nick Swisher. Not only was he a cool guy when I saw him down in Tampa, but he has been off to a great start and he is quite a character. Heres a link of him pitching last night. Sadly he pitches a lot better than Phil Coke does. Plus hes a lefty so he could make a career out of this.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Want to see a game with a group of friends, there are still tickets available!

Given it is the opening year of the new Yankee Stadium, I figured tickets were going to be pretty hard to come by. I was going to try to get together a group of 10 or so friends to go down to the stadium, but I know how tough it can be to get so many seats together, especially given the fact the Yankees are so popular. I found a game during the week in June that I thought would be easier for us to all attend, and I was quite amazed by the results of the search.

Its hard to see, but for 2,625 a ticket, I can get all of my friends together for a game. Now, those tickets don't include the 59.70 convenience charge for EACH ticket along with the 2.50 to print each at home or the up to 22.50 to have it shipped to you. So in adding all that up, it would cost a total of 27,072 for the 10 of us to see the game. Of course, this wouldn't include the tolls, gas and parking that we would also be paying.

I was surprised that they had so many seats together and that those tickets were for sale to the general public. I thought the legends suits were sold to full season ticket holders. It looks like there are going to be a lot of empty seats this year in the lower level.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

The New Yankee Stadium- Protest is Still Intact

To make a long story short, I did end up going to the exhibition game at Yankee Stadium on Saturday. The assignment I had to do was postponed to the following day due to a death to a family friend. I figured this was a once in a lifetime thing (I am never going to be able to afford 2,600 so sit in these seats again) so I made the decision to just go for it instead of sitting at home wishing I had went.

The drive was uneventful. I made it to the stadium in a little under 2.5 hours, which is pretty good considering I wasn't going 90 the entire way. Parking at the stadium is always eventful but getting there early is always the way to go. The have this new system to paying for parking which is pretty stupid if you ask me. Just so you all know, the machine doesn't take Discover, which left me pretty annoyed. If you pay with cash, you have to pay at this pay station which can get quite crowded, depending on when you are paying for the ticket.
As for my seats, they were beyond amazing. Here's a little background about the 2,600 seats. For one, they are padded and there is a tremendous amount of leg space. There are only about 7 or so rows in each of the sections, which are secluded from the rest of the stadium by means of a concrete wall. The is a separate entrance next to gate 4 that is specifically for those that have tickets in this section. Upon entering the gate, there are about 10 security guards, 3 of which are there to check your ticket. After making it through all those people, you make your way towards restaurant, to which you are greeted by more people that want to see your ticket. Words cant even describe how fancy this restaurant is, you would never know you were at a baseball game.

The food is all included (as it should for the money you pay for these seats) and you have the choice of eating in your seats or at the restaurant. I cant understand why someone would pay 2,600 dollars for a regular season game, have amazing seats, and end up sitting inside a restaurant, watching the game on a TV screen. I am pretty sure you can do the same thing at a bar or a different restaurant for a hell of a lot cheaper.
The last thing I have to mention is how amazing the bathrooms are. People seats in this suite are provided with their own bathrooms which make all others look like crap. There were 3 flat screen tv almost like embedded in their mirrors that were behind the sinks.The are these lights that are part of the floor, which really put my ADD into action. Its hard to really explain how gorgeous it was, I was amazed. The one thing I will add though is that a man clearly must have designed the layout of this because no one in their right mind would only put 4 stalls in one bathroom, especially for a women's bathroom.
I am glad I ended up going, since I know I will never be able to sit this close to a game at Yankee Stadium ever again. I will say this though; from what I experienced, it is hard to believe that any real fan will be sitting in these seats. People who can afford to fork out 2,600 dollars for one game and need a restaurant downstairs clearly aren't attending the game to watch baseball. The section was empty for this game, and I am going to assume it is going to be quite empty for the regular season, whether it be from people not showing up or simply that they are sitting downstairs eating their fillet mignon in their 5 star restaurant. While I enjoyed the treatment of sitting down there, it left a sick taste in my mouth realizing how much this stadium has taken away from the average fan and has catered to the wealthy. And you cant say it hasnt, just look around and see how many seats are in the lower deck compared to those in the upper and more affordable seats (which are farther away from the field).